Can My Employer Make Deductions From My Pay?
Your employer can only legally make deductions from your pay under certain circumstances. Otherwise, it is considered unlawful deduction from wages The California Employment Attorneys Group has the pay reduction attorneys you need to ensure that your employer pays for disregarding the law and the effect that it had on your life. If you believe that your employer has illegally made deductions from your paycheck, you need the right attorneys to sue your employer for reducing your pay.
There are many painful deductions you see every time you get your pay stub. Taxes, social security, health care, and much more all take a bigger part of your paycheck than you’d like, but there’s not much you can do about those deductions. Employers can make further deductions to your paycheck but only under special circumstances, and only certain kinds of deductions can be withheld legally from your pay. Even then, the amount your employer can withhold is limited by federal and state laws. Further deductions can be withheld from your paycheck but only with written permission from you – further deductions cannot be legally withheld without your authorization.
So when it comes to deductions withheld from your pay, how do you know that your employer has violated the law? We at the California Employment Attorneys Group are here to make sure that you understand your rights as an employee. We provide the best lawyers to sue your boss for not giving you your bonuses. We help people understand deductions and action they can take if they believe their employer has wrongfully deducted money from their pay. Examples of such questions include:
- What can I do if my employer unlawfully cut my hour, cut my pay, cut bonuses, cut salary?
- What options are available to me if I was not given overtime wages?
- If there was a furlough, can my employer deduct wages?
- What if my employer subjected me to unfair pay deduction without notice or without written notice?
- Can my employer cut my hours at work?
- Can my boss cut my hours and give them to someone else?
What Kind of Deductions Is My Employer Legally Allowed to Withhold From My Paycheck?
Your employer is entitled to withhold amounts from your paycheck. These values are limited by federal law by which your employer must abide. Any other kinds of deductions must be made with your written permission and authorization.
Below are the kinds of deductions that your employer is legally allowed to make:
Some of the types of deductions which are authorized under federal law are deductions like “meals, housing, transportation, debts owed the employer, debts owed to major third parties (such as through the process of garnishment), debts owed the government (like back taxes, federally subsidized student loans, etc.), and child support and alimony.” Garnishment is “payments towards a debt owed by an individual.”
If you, the employee, have authorized the deduction in writing, as in you have signed off on the deduction, your employer is allowed to make such deductions from your paycheck. Employers can collect from your paycheck things like union dues, charitable contributions, or insurance premiums. It is important to note that these collections can be made regardless of whether the deductions leave the total net pay less than the legal minimum wage.
The employer, however, cannot make deductions that would put the pay below minimum wage if the deductions would benefit the employer in any way, shape, or form. Examples of such instances include the following:
- Tools used and required by the employees for work;
- Uniforms required by the employer that must be worn at work;
- The compensation for damages to an employer’s property that was caused by an employee or other individuals;
- Payment for theft of the employer’s property by the employee;
- Compensation for any financial losses which were recorded by the company due to clients/customers not paying their invoice.
An employer is not allowed to make deductions to force the employee pay for any of the costs if their wages would fall to below the minimum wage, or affect their overtime compensation – even if the monetary loss was due solely because of the employee’s ignorance.
Deductions which are voluntarily authorized by the employee, in favor of the employee, and must not benefit the employer work within the eyes of the law.
What Laws Cover Deductions Made by My Employer?
There are federal and state laws which protect dictate what deductions can and cannot be made by employers. At the federal level, the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) limits the deductions which prevent an employee from earning less than the minimum wage, along with any overtime which may be due. Title III of the Consumer Credit Protection Act (CCPA) limits an employee’s earnings that may be garnished and protects employees from wrongful terminations if the payments are garnished for only one debt.
California Labor Laws allow for employers to deduct pay from their employers, but like federal laws, there are restrictions as the reason why and the amount withheld. Below are common payroll deductions which are often made by California employers that are unlawful:
- Gratuities – Employers are not allowed to collect, take, or receive any gratuities that are given or left for an employee. They (employers) cannot deduct any amount from their wages by accepting the gratuity given or left for the employee. (Labor Code Section 351.) Restaurants, however, may have policies within their company which allows/requires tip sharing among employees who provide table service to the customers.
- Bond – If an employer requires a bond of an applicant in order for employment, the employer must provide the costs of that bond. (Labor Code Section 401.)
- Business Expenses – An employee is entitled to receive reimbursement from their employer of all expenses or losses as a direct result of the employee’s work duties. For example, an employee is made to drive out of town for the day. The employee would be entitled to the gas money which they had to spend for their drive.
- Photographs – If an employer requires a photograph of the employer, like for an ID badge, for example, the employer must pay the costs associated with creating that photograph.
- Medicine/Physical Examinations – Employers may not withhold the wages of an employee, or require that applicants pay for any process of a pre-employment medical or physical examination taken, as a condition of employment. Additionally, an employer cannot withhold or deduct wages or require that an employee pay for a physical examination required by federal and state laws/regulations.
What Can I Do If My Employer Makes an Illegal Deduction From My Wages?
If you believe that your employer has made an illegal deduction, or withheld wages from your paycheck , you have the right to file a lawsuit against your employer. Likewise, you can file a charge with the Division of Labor Standard Enforcement, but it is not required – you can skip this step and go directly to court if you so wish.
If you are no longer under the employment of that employer who withheld wages from you, you can also include in your file a Waiting Time Penalty claim pursuant to Labor Code Section 203.
Competent employment lawyers, like those found at the California Employment Attorneys Group, can explain your full rights as an employee and the damages to which you are entitled.
How We Can Help – Free Consultation and Zero Fee Guarantee
The California Employment Attorneys Group are the Los Angeles employment lawyers you need to represent you and support you if your employers have illegally withheld deductions from your paycheck. Contact us today if you want to file a lawsuit against your employer for cutting your hours or reducing your pay. We offer free consultation and the zero-fee guarantee ¬– this means there is no financial obligation on your part, and removes all the financial risk because if we do not prove your case, you do not pay for our services. Our law firm is based out of Los Angeles, California but we are active in the entire state of California and can handle cases from anywhere in California.